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Posts Made By: Les Chambers

June 20, 2008 12:53 AM Forum: Polls

Drill ANWR

Posted By Les Chambers

Don Barar said:


The problem with the enviornmental movement is that they demogoge the issues and make arguments that prey on emotions of others rather than reasoned analysis.


I agree to an extent, but only to an extent. If you want to talk about playing to emotions, just listen to Bush's statement yesterday---all that dribble about national security and "energy independence",(not a word about conservation) was all geared to convincing us that unless we risk one of the last pristine environments in the country Bin Laden will have his way with our wives and children, BS. As for energy independence, we will never have cogent energy policy as long as we leave the oil industry write that policy. Have you ever wondered why 2008 models of cars don't get any better mileage than the 1988 models? Or why most major American cities have no significant mass transit system? Can it be because improving m.p.g.s or adding mass transit would reduce the need for oil and the power of the industry? But the environmentalists are not without fault either. The only viable, long term solution to the planet's energy needs is nuclear, fission now and fusion later. It produces no green house gases,is safe and the waste can be stored safely for 1000s of years. Yet the environmentalist and NIMBYs have sidelined the nuclear option for the last 40 years in this country. It's a shame. We could have been energy independent 20 years ago if reason had prevailed.

Les

June 20, 2008 04:14 PM Forum: Polls

Drill ANWR

Posted By Les Chambers

[QUOTE]Lynden Williams said:

The reason our gas prices are so high is because the dollar is totally worthless and all the other nations that sell us oil want the same purchasing power with their oil income that they had before.

You're right. The diminishing supply of cheap, readily available oil is only one factor. The dollar is essentially a promissory note. Any such a note is only as good as the credit worthiness of the person issuing it. The eroding value of the dollar necessarily has to lead to higher prices. A prime example some of you may have seen is the pre-WWII picture of a German with a wheelbarrow full of Wiemar Marks. He was trying to buy a loaf of bread. As our dollar continues to drop in value it will always take more of those dollars to buy anything, including barrels of oil.

Of course it doesn't help that for that last 60yrs, the U.S. has taken positions directly hostile to the folks with the oil. Piss off the folks with the oil and then try to buy it with devalued currency. Yeah, that makes sense.

July 1, 2008 02:24 AM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

[QUOTE]Don Barar said:


Governments have no business mandating what fuel or efficiency of a motor vehicle. This should be purely a market matter.

Your statement is idiotic. Govts. have EVERY right to mandate fuel types and vehicle efficiencies, for the same reasons they can regulate things like air quality and criminal conduct. Natural resources such as oil and the environment belong to the people as a collective, not the monied interests. The reason we are in the current situation is because govt did NOT regulate fuel efficiencies stringently enough. It was your free market that gave us SUVs, pick up trucks and other ecological disasters while fuel efficiency stagnated.
It's time the govt stopped being the prison bitch to the oil industry and did its "job". It should start with a glutton tax on any vehicle that is not a passenger automobile--collect it at the pump and through license plate renewals-- and mandate 35 m.p.g. as a minimum for any new vehicle sold for private use and increase the m.p.g. requirements by 5-10 for each successive model year.

However, I am certain the Obamcons view things differently.

Hopefully.

Les


July 1, 2008 11:50 PM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

Don, I don't think that I'm the one who is responding emotionally. The plain fact is that it was the "free market" that created the current oil dependency situation. Between the auto/oil industry alliance that has held down mileage efficiency while selling gas guzzling SUVs, or the oil speculators that have repeatedly driven up oil prices, the "free market" is the real culprit. If our govt had put the interest of the country ahead of "free market" read oil lobbyists, it would have reigned in these practices before they became a problem.

Regarding "bad choices", the free market has made some bad choices too. Betamax v. VHS, Mac v.PC? Or what about such great market innovations as DDT, lead paint or tobacco for that matter?

As for govt involvment in our lives, Bertrand Russell showed 80 yrs ago that the citizens of countries with active regulatory govts were better educated, healtier and wealthier than their counterparts in laize faire countries. Even today, compare Europe with the U.S. By whatever measure you choose, infant mortality rates, drug dependency, life span, education levels,whatever standard you use, Europe beats the U.S. hands down.

All in all "free market" is just a catch-phrase for giving business free reign to put profit over common good.

Take care,

Les

July 2, 2008 08:20 PM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

Herb will eventually yak this thread, but until then:
Don,

OK. Let take this a point at a time:

"The free market created the oil dependency situation. Wrong. Our country is oil dependent for a lot of reasons that are not related to the free market. "

I agree with you to a point. However, it was the free market that left people turn to such poor choices as SUVs and 4000 sq ft homes in suburbia. As for nuclear power, I agree with you. The fears were completely overblown. However, it was your precious free market that allowed the anti-nuke freaks to prevail and let the utility companies maintain their reliance on fossil fuels. If the govt had mandated oil import restrictions in favor of building nuclear power stations, we could have avoided the current situation.

"Speculators that have repeatedly driven up the price of oil. The futures market is a place where free peoples go to mitigate and assume risk."

Don that is BS and you know it. Part of the problem IS an emaciated dollar. Oil prices are higher in part because we are trying to pay for it with the 2000s equivalent of Pesos. However, speculators share much of the blame. Their only interest is profit. They play on every petty fear to justify driving the price up. Today some nut job in Jerusalem drove a bulldozer into a bus of jews. The price of oil shot up. Israel renewed its threats to vaporize Tehran (to maintain is monopoly of WMDs in the region) and the price of oil shot up. In other news Saudi Arabia noted that its production increased by 100,000 bbl a day since last month. Angola, one of the largest oil producing countries in Africa also reported increased production. What happened to oil prices? They closed at another high $142/bbl. So where is your rational risk sharing? It all just profiteering Don.

"There is an alliance between the auto and oil industry. If there was an alliance between the auto and oil industry, how come the oil industry is not helping the auto industry now with their financial problems?"

Why? There is no honor among thieves.

"B]Bertrand Russell showed that the citizens of countries with regulatory governments had a better standards of living.[/B] This statement was made in 1928 and he ended up being dead wrong."

Precisely what part of his findings have been discredited? The citizens of the 27 heavily regulated European countries enjoy guaranteed health care, far more vacation time and paid leaves of absences and upwards of 2 years PAID maternity leave. They are guaranteed a secure retirement and make on average the same as their american counterparts, when all these benefits are taken into consideration. OTOH, in the freemarket United States, sizeable chunks of the population have no heath insurance at all and/or have lost their retirement hopes when their employers mismanaged or simply stole their pension funds. And hey, lets not mention the skyrocketing foreclosure rates or plummeting house values. All due to lax govt regulation and "market" conditions.

"Have you been to Europe for any extended period of time and not just been in the showcase cities?"

Have you spent ANY times in an American inner-city? Every grow up on the East side of Cleveland for instance? You ever have to choose between heat or rent money? Please don't dash Europe until you have considered that many of your fellow countrymen would fare far better there than they have here.


"Europe was economically moribund for the last 30 years of the 20th century. Europe still has a higher unemployment rate than the US. Why?"

Actually the EU economy has steadily grown since its formation. And this growth has taken place while the US freemarket was contracting. Best proof is that the Euro and the Brittish Pound now out trade the US Dollar by substantial margins. It now takes almost $2 to buy 1 British Pound and $1.50 to buy a Euro. There was a great column today by Froma Harrop. "Euro-spenders by the jumbo-jetload lured to US by dollar's demise" It speaks of European middle class folk (the ones you think don’t exist in significant numbers) coming to the US and buying "cheap" electronics and other goods as the US was a dollar store.


Warmest regards,

Les

July 2, 2008 06:58 PM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

[QUOTE]Don Barar said:

You write:

I can own a $8,000 Astro-Physics telescope, a $12,500 Paramount ME, a $15,000 CCD camera, and drive off to may favorite dark site in my H2 to photograph and contemplate the universe. But most importantly, there is no one to tell me that I can not own and use these these things for my enjoyment. All of them are made available via the free market.

Unfortunately, there are indviduals like yourself and the other Obamacons who what to decide what is good for me, what I can drive, what I can own, what give me pleasures, and how much money I can make.

To which I reply:

Honestly, but with no offense intended, you sound like a case of the "Haves" doing their damnedest to make sure the "have nots" stay in their place or atleast salve their own consciences. ;-) As for "individuals like myself" who want to decide what is good for you, I make no apologies for arguing that in most matters the common good outweighs individual, selfish needs. If people were angels, there would be no need for any govts. To quote a certain Mr. Jefferson. Or to paraphrase Ghandi---the earth will always be able to meet the needs of people, it can never grapple with their greed.

Take care, enjoy your toys.

July 2, 2008 09:54 PM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

I am sure what you write is technically correct Doctor. However, the consensus IS that US IMR are climbing in comparison with other developed nations. http://abcnews.go.com/Health/GlobalHealth/story?id=1266515

The same is true with life-spans. In the US the average (M/F) lifespan is 78 yrs. This is lower than Germany (79), Greece (79.4), Norway (79.7) UK (78.7) and France (79.7) http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004393.html
Statistical methods aside, the larger point is that Europe, because of active govt involvement, has the medical and social safety net in place that ensures that pregnant women can get care needed to minimize premature births. The EU also lacks the rampant drug addiction rates and the problems they cause AND it lacks the large segments of population that you suggest should not be counted because they have been marginalized out of the system by welfare.
Regarding education levels, again your figures may be correct, but the question is not the number of degrees but their ultimate utility in maintaining a society. China for instance produces several times the number of engineers each year than the US.
Lastly, is this latest oil crisis an “economic war”? You bet it is. The question is whether we win it by reigning in the corporate giants and speculators and replace them with govt policies that break the oil addiction. I guess that is the original question. Sorry for all the sidetracks, Group.

July 4, 2008 09:38 PM Forum: Polls

All cars built after 2015 should be powered by...

Posted By Les Chambers

Did either you or the good Dr.Strangelove bother to follow the links I posted? Or is it a case of facts not fitting YOUR opinion? To save you some reading, UNICEF and the WHO both use methods of calculating IMR that take into account differences in the ways other countries measure the IMR. The same is true with longevity rates.

I'm out of here. Viva la Revolutione :-)

Ciao.

Don Barar said:

Les:

Here you go again. You leftists always deflect with statements like "well you may be technically correct, but......". Once confronted with facts, you don't want here them. Why let the AMA and CDC get in the way. Hell, we have ABC News. After all, the AMA and CDC are in cahoots with one another to prevent to the socialization of medicine. Besides those rich physicians need to be punished. It will not do the rest of us any good, but now it will be "fair".

Les, you have been exposed! You are factless. You would much rather substitute your feelings for hard data. This is why junk science thrives. Al Gore hope that you are reading this. Here is another one for you that will believe your falsified data.

My good Doctor Howe, thank you for your help in exposing this fool.

Don

August 6, 2008 01:44 AM Forum: Polls

THE QUESTION - some of you shouldn't look - you have been warned

Posted By Les Chambers

[QUOTE]Jeffrey Counsil said:

-How about the anti-scientific halting of embryonic research to relieve human suffering?

Um, you would rather kill unborn children? Besides, it was the Government *funding* that was halted. Since then, there have been breakthroughs that do not require the murdering of children. That research was accomplished in the private sector.

There are more neurons in the brain of a housefly than in the embryos used for stem cell research. Harvesting stem cells is no more like killing babies than swatting a gnat. The real tragedy is the millions of children that have died or will die from diseases that may have been cured through the reseach. In fact, the entire "stem cell" debate was a clear example of this administrations greatest flaw: it is controlled by the religious right who still see the world through 1st century eyes.

-How about the complete politicization of the Justice Department on a scale not seen since -the Reconstruction Republicans?

You've lost me here. In case you have forgotten, CONGRESS has to approve any justices. CONGRESS is the body of elected "representatives" that control who is appointed.

I believe the original poster was referring the administrations policies of firing Assistant Attorney Generals for no other reasn than they did not share their political views or passing up graduates of Ivy League lawschools in favor of graduates from back-water, but "christian" schools.

Cheers.


August 6, 2008 04:34 PM Forum: Polls

THE QUESTION - some of you shouldn't look - you have been warned

Posted By Les Chambers

Jeffrey Counsil said:

-There are more neurons in the brain of a housefly than in the embryos used for stem cell -research. Harvesting stem cells is no more like killing babies than swatting a gnat.

Hmmm... From what I understood at the time, only certain types of Human Brain Stem Cells are viable for research, not housefly or gnat..

You choose to miss the points. 1. Stem cell research is NOT killing children while abandoning that line of research for bs reasons condemns many others to die of diseases that may otherwise have been cured by that research. 2. The "reasons" cited by the Bush administration for refusing to fund the research did not rest on any valid scientific basis. Instead, they were irrational attempts to play to a politically powerful interest group.


The "firings" had very little to do with "political views" of the Bush administration, but more of not doing their jobs as prescribed by the laws of the country. They refused to uphold the laws they were sworn to uphold because of *their* political views. Laws that were in place even before Bush took office. They were trying to legislate from the bench. That's NOT what the Judicial Branch's role in Government is. They were derelict in their duties.

Yes that was the party line wasn't it? But then administration officials wouldn't even testify about the firings much less provide any evidence to support that claim. Speaking of "upholding the laws" Federal law prohibits hiring or firing a civil service employee because of that employee's religious or political views. I guess in your world-view only "certain" laws are worth upholding?

Cheers